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Director: David Hand
Release Date: October 10, 1936
Stars: Mickey Mouse, Pluto
‘Mickey’s Elephant’s opens with Mickey receiving a cute young elephant from the Rajah of Ghaboon as a playmate for Pluto. Unfortunately Pluto is not amused, and he thinks ‘Bobo’ is an intruder with intentions to replace him.
‘Mickey’s elephant’ is similar to ‘Mickey’s Pal Pluto‘ (1933) and to ‘Mickey’s Kangaroo‘ (1935), in which Pluto is also jealous of an intruder and which also feature his evil side. Like in ‘Mickey’s Pal Pluto’ Pluto’s evil consciousness has materialized into a little devilish persona, who talks with a strong New York accent and who persuades Pluto to fix Bobo using red pepper. Sneezing along Bobo blows is own new house down, but unfortunately Pluto’s too…
‘Mickey’s Elephant’ is a rare example of a Mickey Mouse film inspired by the Mickey Mouse comic strip. Most of the time the influence was reversed. But in this case Bobo the elephant had made his entrance in Floyd Gottfredson’s strip two years earlier. Bobo is a completely innocent character, and Pluto’s little devil notwithstanding, the cartoon is more cute than funny.
Watch ‘Mickey’s Elephant’ yourself and tell me what you think:
Director: Paul Driessen
Release Date: 1970
Made largely in Spain with help of small subsidy from the Dutch Ministry of Culture, the film tells about a small boy who accidentally sets a forest on fire, but repays his deed by extinguishing another one with help of an elephant with two trunks.
The simple story is hampered by the childish voice over (the English version is much more enjoyable than the original in that respect), and the film certainly doesn’t belong to Driessen’s best works, but its imaginative colors and weird perspectives are still thrilling. It already shows the film maker’s very distinctive animation style, which he would expand and improve over the years, creating such masterpieces as ‘On Land, at Sea and in the Air‘ (1980) and ‘The Writer‘ (1988).
Watch ‘Het verhaal van Kleine Yoghurt’ yourself and tell me what you think:
‘Het verhaal van Kleine Yoghurt’ is available on the DVD ‘The Dutch Films of Paul Driessen’
Director: Clyde Geronimi
Release Date: February 6, 1948
‘The Big Wash’ was Clyde Geronimi’s last cartoon and his only one in the Goofy series. In the years to follow he would concentrate his directing skills on feature films, with the exception of two short specials, ‘Susie, the Little Blue Coupe’ (1952) and ‘The Story of Anyburg, U.S.A.’ (1957).
‘The Big Wash’ is not really a highlight in Geronimi’s career. Like ‘Foul Hunting‘ from the previous year, it uses the original Goofy character and Pinto Colvig’s voice, and, like in the former cartoon, this results in a slow, boring and remarkably old-fashioned film. The short is cute, but terribly unfunny, especially when compared to most other Goofy cartoons or contemporary entries from other studios.
‘The Big Wash’ was the last cartoon to feature the Goofy character as it was developed in the thirties. In his next cartoon, ‘Tennis Racquet‘, Goofy was not only once again voiceless, he was also redesigned, making him more fitting to the post-war era.
Watch ‘The Big Wash’ yourself and tell me what you think:
Director: Abe Levitow
Release Date: March 3, 1966
Stars: Tom & Jerry
This rather dull and unfunny cartoon marks the debut of animator Abe Levitow as a Tom & Jerry director. It is not a success. Levitow was an experienced director: in 1959 he had directed several Warner Brothers cartoons, and at UPA he had directed Mr. Magoo television specials, and the studio’s second feature, Gay-Purree (1962). Yet, this experience is hard to detect in ‘Jerry Go-Round’: both the designs, the timing and the animation are inferior to those in the cartoons directed by Chuck Jones himself.
Watch ‘Jerry-Go-Round’ yourself and tell me what you think:
Director: Gene Deitch
Release Date: October 1962
Stars: Tom & Jerry
Tom and Jerry perform uninspired antics reminiscent of the former two cartoons. Never sympathetic in the Gene Deitch cartoons, Jerry is particularly nasty in this one. The cartoon’s only highlight is its strangely designed elephant.
Watch ‘Sorry Safari’ yourself and tell me what you think: